Memphis is home to so many cool, talented creatives, so it’s always a pleasure to share when they do something innovative and fun. Fashion Illustrator and Travelwear Designer Kris Keys is partnering with ArtUp to showcase her first collection, Hematology, with the opening reception this Saturday, Jan 12, 2019 from 5pm-7pm at the South Main Artspace Lofts.
Known for her dreamy watercolor illustrations (Kris has worked with brands like NARS and Spectrum Cosmetics in addition to her own “Beauty In” travel series), this exhibition will include textile works, designs, and a live art performance from Kris while also serving as a fundraising effort towards the manufacturing of her collection. I first met Kris back in 2013 when she was preparing to go to the London College of Fashion; we stayed in touch over the years (even working together here during one of her trips home), so it’s inspiring to see everything come full circle as she’s working to fully launch her first line!
Not only is Kris talented, but she is one of the coolest women I know; keep reader to learn a little more about her inspiration behind Hematology and how you can support:
How did you get into fashion design + illustration?
Getting into fashion design and illustration was a loaded but awesome journey. I started just illustrating people and things around London that inspired me and it grew into illustrating for friends. After about 1 year of doing that, I started to get commissions and gigs with Beauty and Fashion Brands throughout the UK. I then decided to pursue studying fashion design at London College of Fashion.
Which fabrics do you enjoy working with the most?
I prefer light weight fabrics that still give warmth and comfort. Fabrics such as double georgettes, cashmere blends, and silks are my favorite.
Can you tell me a little more about the Hematology Exhibition and your inspiration behind the collection?
Hematology was birthed as a result of viewing my blood smears from a genetic blood disorder that I was diagnosed with as a baby called Hereditary Elliptocytosis. All of the colors, textiles and silhouettes of each garment are inspired by the colors of blood and the shapes of irregular red blood cells.
The exhibition shows a visual glimpse into my journey of creating the collection. It shows how I took this blood disorder and turned it into a wearable art form for women across the globe. It will include textiles, garments, and a live illustration performance inspired by the collection. The purpose of this exhibition is to raise capital for the production of the full collection.
Which is your favorite design from your collection?
I favor the jumpsuit, which was the first piece I designed from this collection. It’s made with a soft, wrinkle free double georgette and it’s covered in a textile print of red blood cells. It’s my go to when I travel, giving me ease and comfort while not compromising my style.
How long will the Exhibition run?
It runs January 12- February 9 with three programs throughout the duration of the exhibition.
January 12- Opening Reception (5pm-7pm)
January 25- Trolley Night (6pm-9pm) Guests have the opportunity to have their portraits painted by me
February 2- Artist Talk (1pm-3pm)